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Article Archive >> In Your County

CVB Receives Maryland Cultural Heritage Tourism Award

PHOTO CAP: MD Department of Business and Economic Development Secretary Christian Johansson, CVB President and CEO Tom Riford, MD Governor Martin O'Malley, MD Tourism Development Board Chairman Greg Shockley, and Executive Director of the Maryland Office of Tourism Margot Amelia



Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau Receives Maryland Cultural Heritage Tourism Award from Governor Martin O'Malley
Commemorations for 150th Anniversary of John Brown's Raid on Harpers Ferry Praised by Governor

(Hagerstown, MD): The Maryland Governor's Cultural Heritage Tourism Award was presented to the Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau. The presentation took place at the Maryland Tourism and Travel Summit where Governor Martin O'Malley spoke about the importance of the hospitality industry to the state's economy.
The governor's award was presented in recognition for the work in promoting the 150th anniversary of John Brown's Raid on Harpers Ferry. Governor O'Malley pointed out that the first shots that sparked the Civil War happened in Washington County, Maryland. He praised the cooperative multi-state efforts to bring attention to the 150th anniversary of John Brown's raid.
The President and CEO of the Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau, Thomas B. Riford was presented with the award. Riford gave recognition to the four-state John Brown 150th anniversary committee, which planned over 100 commemoration events.
Margot A. Amelia is the executive director of the Maryland Office of Tourism. "The events surrounding the 150th Anniversary of John Brown's Raid on Harpers Ferry have been the start of a multi-year commemoration of the Sesquicentennial of the Civil War," said Margot Amelia. "The interest in the Civil War and the events that have been planned have brought thousands of people to our great state."
Governor Martin O'Malley announced the recipients of the 2009 Maryland Tourism Awards - selected by the Tourism Office and the Maryland Tourism Development Board - at the Maryland Tourism and Travel Summit last week in Ocean City. The Cultural Heritage Tourism Award was given in part because of significant contributions and efforts to boost jobs and economic impact in Maryland's tourism industry while enhancing the state as a travel destination.
Tom Riford said, "I was very pleased to accept the award at the Maryland Tourism and Travel Summit from the governor. I accepted the award on behalf of the entire multi-state and multi-county committee." The Convention and Visitors Bureau sponsored and hosted the 150th Anniversary of John Brown's Raid web site (www.johnbrownraid.org) and also did a significant amount of marketing and promotion for the event, which was named a Top 100 Event in North America by the American Bus Association. "We were very pleased to also host all of the quad-state planning and organizing meetings for the committee." Riford said that scores of events were held in Washington County during the commemorations of the "Raid that Sparked the Civil War."
Two new John Brown's Raid projects will be announced very soon. "Echoes of John Brown" is a movie and travelogue sponsored and produced by the CVB, and professionally done by Historical Entertainment. The DVD's will be available at the Downtown Hagerstown Visitor Welcome and also at Harpers Ferry NHP. A premier of the film project is planned for December 2nd. Also, a new CD of John Brown music and Civil War music has been produced by the CVB. The project contains all original songs done by Jenny Avila and her band. The CD's will be available soon.

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